By HANK KURZ Jr. and JIM VERTUNO
AP Sports Writers
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Shaka Smart is leaving Virginia Commonwealth to coach the Texas Longhorns.
VCU sports information director Scott Day confirmed to reporters gathered at the campus Wednesday night that Smart was making the move. Smart met with VCU players earlier in the evening.
Texas athletic director Steve Patterson flew to Richmond on Thursday to close the deal.
Smart has been one of the hottest names in college coaching since leading the Rams to the Final Four in 2011. Patterson has zeroed in on bringing Smart to Texas immediately after firing former Longhorns coach Rick Barnes last weekend.
Terms of Smart's contract were not immediately released and VCU said a statement would be released Thursday. Barnes made $2.62 million last season. Smart made $1.8 million with the Rams.
Smart has won at least 26 games in each of his six seasons at VCU.
Vertuno reported from Austin, Texas.
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